Hampshire County, Massachusetts

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Hampshire County, Massachusetts
Old Hampshire County Courthouse, Northampton MA.jpg
Old Hampshire County Courthouse
Map of Massachusetts highlighting Hampshire County
Location in the state of Massachusetts
Map of the United States highlighting Massachusetts
Massachusetts's location in the U.S.
Founded 1662
Seat Northampton
Largest town Amherst
Area
 • Total 545 sq mi (1,412 km2)
 • Land 529 sq mi (1,370 km2)
 • Water 16 sq mi (41 km2), 3.02%
Population
 • (2010) 158,080
 • Density 299/sq mi (115/km²)
Congressional districts 1st, 2nd
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website www.hampshirecog.org

Hampshire County is a non-governmental county located in the U.S. state of Massachusetts. It was named after the county Hampshire, in England.[1] At the 2010 census, the population was 158,080.[2] Its most populous municipality is Amherst and its county seat is Northampton.[3]

Hampshire County is part of the Springfield Metropolitan Statistical Area.

History[edit]

Hampshire County was constituted in 1662 from previously unorganized territory comprising the entire western part of Massachusetts Bay Colony. It included the original towns of Springfield, Northampton, and Hadley. The original Hampshire County included territory that is now in modern day Hampden County, Franklin County, and Berkshire County, as well as small parts of modern day Worcester County. By 1683, three new towns (Westfield (now Southwick), Suffield, and Enfield) had been incorporated south of Springfield. These towns were partly or wholly in the modern state of Connecticut at the time of their incorporation and resulted in a border dispute between the Connecticut Colony and Massachusetts Bay Colony.

In 1731, Worcester County was created, which included the original town of Brookfield (incorporated in 1718 as part of Hampshire County). More territory was lost to Worcester County in 1742 when the town of Western (now Warren) was created and added to Worcester County. Further territorial losses occurred in 1749 when the towns of Enfield, Somers (split off from Enfield in 1734), and Suffield unilaterally joined Connecticut Colony. In 1761, Berkshire County was created resulting in even more territorial loss for Hampshire County. In 1811, Franklin County was split off from the northern part of Hampshire, and in the following year, Hampden County was split off from the southern part of Hampshire.

Like a number of Massachusetts counties, Hampshire County exists today both as a historical geographic region and a judicial district; it has no county government. Many former county functions were assumed by state agencies in 1999. The sheriff and some other regional officials with specific duties are still elected county-wide to perform duties within the region. The Hampshire Council of Governments, with elected councilors from 15 towns, provides many regional services,[4] though otherwise there is no county council or commissioners. Together with Hampden County, Hampshire County municipalities belong to the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission.

Voter Registration and Party Enrollment as of October 13, 2010[5]
Party Number of Voters Percentage
  Democratic 38,158 38.26%
  Republican 8,917 8.94%
  Unaffiliated 51,849 51.98%
  Minor Parties 815 0.82%
Total 99,739 100%

Politics[edit]

Presidential election results[6]
Year Democratic Republican
2012 70.3% 56,552 26.6% 21,366
2008 71.5% 56,869 25.9% 20,618
2004 69.4% 51,680 28.6% 21,315
2000 56.2% 38,543 28.0% 19,202

Geography[edit]

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 545.44 square miles (1,412.7 km2), of which 529.03 square miles (1,370.2 km2) (or 96.99%) is land and 16.41 square miles (42.5 km2) (or 3.01%) is water.

Hampshire County is the middle section of the Pioneer Valley, and the northern tip of the Hartford-Springfield Knowledge Corridor.

Adjacent counties[edit]

Hampshire County is the only county in Massachusetts surrounded in all directions by other counties of Massachusetts: all other counties in the state are adjacent to at least one other state or the open ocean.

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 59,656
1800 72,432 21.4%
1810 76,275 5.3%
1820 26,487 −65.3%
1830 30,254 14.2%
1840 30,897 2.1%
1850 35,732 15.6%
1860 37,823 5.9%
1870 44,388 17.4%
1880 47,232 6.4%
1890 51,859 9.8%
1900 58,820 13.4%
1910 63,327 7.7%
1920 69,599 9.9%
1930 72,801 4.6%
1940 72,461 −0.5%
1950 87,594 20.9%
1960 103,229 17.8%
1970 123,981 20.1%
1980 138,813 12.0%
1990 146,568 5.6%
2000 152,251 3.9%
2010 158,080 3.8%
Est. 2012 159,795 1.1%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]
2012 Estimate[8]

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 152,251 people, 55,991 households, and 33,818 families residing in the county. The population density was 288 people per square mile (111/km²). There were 58,644 housing units at an average density of 111 per square mile (43/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 91.10% White, 1.96% Black or African American, 0.19% Native American, 3.40% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 1.50% from other races, and 1.80% from two or more races. 3.42% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 14.7% were of Irish, 12.8% Polish, 9.6% English, 9.5% French, 8.5% French Canadian, 6.9% Italian and 6.4% German ancestry according to Census 2000. 88.8% spoke English, 3.4% Spanish, 1.7% French and 1.4% Polish as their first language.

There were 55,991 households out of which 28.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.40% were married couples living together, 9.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.60% were non-families. 28.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 2.96.

In the county the population was spread out with 19.60% under the age of 18, 19.30% from 18 to 24, 26.80% from 25 to 44, 22.20% from 45 to 64, and 12.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 87.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $46,098, and the median income for a family was $57,480. Males had a median income of $39,327 versus $30,362 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,685. About 5.10% of families and 9.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.20% of those under age 18 and 6.70% of those age 65 or over.

Demographic breakdown by town[edit]

Income[edit]

The ranking of unincorporated communities that are included on the list are reflective if the census designated locations and villages were included as cities or towns. Data is from the 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates.[10][11][12]

Rank Town Per capita
income
Median
household
income
Median
family
income
Population Number of
households
1 Pelham Town $50,367 $83,667 $97,875 1,290 556
2 Williamsburg Town $35,500 $62,851 $86,136 2,543 1,158
Hatfield CDP $35,150 $62,212 $93,750 1,390 665
Massachusetts State $35,051 $65,981 $83,371 6,512,227 2,522,409
3 Westhampton Town $34,337 $82,759 $88,500 1,590 632
Granby CDP $33,819 $77,292 $87,132 1,415 598
4 Hatfield Town $33,452 $53,485 $80,833 3,272 1,560
5 Worthington Town $33,360 $64,063 $75,417 1,181 532
6 Northampton City $33,175 $54,413 $77,998 28,621 11,853
7 Belchertown Town $32,898 $75,502 $94,232 14,479 5,605
8 Goshen Town $32,734 $77,917 $76,667 1,121 443
9 Southampton Town $32,548 $76,396 $85,521 5,758 2,261
10 Chesterfield Town $31,730 $59,063 $69,766 1,043 469
11 Hadley Town $31,727 $75,313 $86,106 5,209 2,048
12 Granby Town $31,409 $70,362 $82,684 6,232 2,619
13 Middlefield Town $31,110 $58,958 $78,281 431 190
14 Easthampton City $30,894 $53,185 $78,166 16,051 7,458
15 Huntington Town $29,245 $55,917 $73,438 2,219 933
16 Cummington Town $29,225 $58,750 $67,143 1,046 430
Hampshire County County $29,113 $60,331 $82,999 157,630 58,921
17 South Hadley Town $29,067 $62,532 $80,794 17,493 6,787
United States Country $27,915 $52,762 $64,293 306,603,772 114,761,359
18 Plainfield Town $27,758 $61,719 $66,250 589 247
Belchertown CDP $27,133 $47,863 $79,135 2,557 1,160
19 Ware Town $26,910 $50,712 $66,287 9,851 4,369
South Amherst CDP $23,823 $61,250 $95,625 4,760 1,435
Ware CDP $22,088 $ 37,040 $51,193 6,003 2,771
Huntington CDP $21,374 $40,486 $54,375 937 423
20 Amherst Town $21,049 $52,281 $100,304 37,611 8,771
North Amherst CDP $17,167 $33,093 $84,083 7,114 1,953
Amherst Center CDP $14,017 $44,604 $99,087 19,347 2,715

Cities, towns, and villages*[edit]

* Villages are census division, but have no separate corporate existence from the towns they are in.

Largest municipalities[edit]

  1. Amherst: 37,819
  2. Northampton: 28,549
  3. South Hadley: 17,514
  4. Easthampton: 15,994
  5. Belchertown: 14,649
  6. Ware: 9,707
  7. Granby: 6,420
  8. Southampton: 5,387
  9. Hadley: 4,793
  10. Hatfield: 3,249
  11. Williamsburg: 2,482
  12. Huntington: 2,174
  13. Westhampton: 1,607
  14. Pelham: 1,403
  15. Worthington 1,270
  16. Chesterfield: 1,201
  17. Goshen: 1,054
  18. Cummington: 978
  19. Plainfield: 589
  20. Middlefield: 542

The Five Colleges[edit]

Hampshire County is notable for the presence within its borders of the "Five Colleges", comprising the University of Massachusetts flagship campus and four well-known private colleges:

A consortium, Five Colleges, Inc., provides easy course cross-registration and free bus service between the campuses.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 148. 
  2. ^ "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 26, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  4. ^ "Hampshire Council of Governments". Retrieved 5 July 2011. 
  5. ^ "Registration and Party Enrollment Statistics as of October 13, 2010" (PDF). Massachusetts Elections Division. Retrieved 2010-03-14. 
  6. ^ "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved 2011-06-11. 
  7. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved August 26, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved August 26, 2013. 
  9. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  10. ^ "SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-26. 
  11. ^ "ACS DEMOGRAPHIC AND HOUSING ESTIMATES 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-26. 
  12. ^ "HOUSEHOLDS AND FAMILIES 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-26. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°20′N 72°40′W / 42.34°N 72.66°W / 42.34; -72.66